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Letter to the Editor: Divest Princeton is still alive and fighting for Princeton to become a climate leader

Banner with the slogan “Climate action now” is held by a person standing behind a tiger statue
Students urge the University to divest fully from fossil fuels in a Sep. 24 sit-in at Nassau Hall.
Candace Do / The Daily Princetonian

The following is a letter to the editor and reflects the author’s views alone. For information on how to submit a piece to the Opinion section, click here.

Divest Princeton has not “rebranded,” as suggested by a recent article published by The Daily Princetonian — we are still very much here and alive. We welcome the creation of a Sunrise Hub at Princeton and look forward to supporting their campaigns for climate justice in the Princeton community and beyond. The environmental space at Princeton has room for many voices, and we are excited that Sunrise Princeton is joining the fight for climate justice and accountability at Princeton.


In the meantime, Divest Princeton will continue to call out Princeton University’s unfinished business: partial divestment and partial dissociation. Seven hundred million dollars still invested in private fossil fuels is unacceptable. It is well documented that fossil fuel companies owned by private interests are the least regulated and the most damaging to the communities around them. Princeton has not finished the job of divestment, so Divest Princeton isn’t going anywhere.

There is no publicly available rationale or discussion behind the changes in the recent University update to its dissociation list, just a list of their general criteria. This February, ConocoPhillips was added to the list, but eight formerly dissociated companies are now deemed “acceptable” partners for Princeton, including TotalEnergies, responsible for the EACOP pipeline in Uganda, coal company Bathurst Resources, and Oxbow Carbon LLC, founded and run by Bill Koch who has fought efforts to combat climate change. 

One of Divest Princeton’s greatest strengths is that since 2019, it has had an amazing coalition of undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, staff, and alumni. This entire coalition has contributed to shifting Princeton’s Overton window towards true climate leadership. We look forward to the day when we can announce that our work is done, but that day hasn’t come yet. 

Hannah Reynolds ’22 is a past co-coordinator of Divest Princeton and Lynne Archibald ’87 is an alumni organizer with Divest Princeton. They write on behalf of Divest Princeton and can be reached at ffdivestprinceton[at]